This game was predictable from the start.
For 12 games now, the Giants have followed the same pattern. After getting shut down for 2 games, the Giants come back in the next game and score at least 6 runs. The pattern held up in this series at Wrigley Field, as the Giants scored 1, 0, and 13 runs respectively against the Cubs.
The Giants got ahead early against Cubs pitcher Ryan Dempster and never looked back. With the bases loaded and nobody out, Buster Posey hit a double play ball that scored a run and gave the Giants a 1-0 lead. With the way things have gone for them, this is considered a big rally
Then came the top of the second inning. Jose Guillen lead off the inning getting hit by a pitch. This set things up for the struggling Juan Uribe, who hit a 2 run bolt of lightening over the wall in left field. So far, that made it a monster inning for the Giants (compared to the last couple nights). Just like that, the Giants had a 3-0 lead. This was only the beginning.
In the same inning, with runners at second and third with one out, Freddy Sanchez singled in Madison Bumgarner from third, giving the Giants a 4-0 lead. Later in the frame, Buster Posey came up and singled up the middle, with runners at first and third, increasing the Giants lead to 5-0. Their sixth run of the inning would come on a wild pitch.
The Giants went for the knock-out punch a few batters later. With the bases loaded and 2 out, Juan Uribe hit a grand slam to left, his 22nd homer of the year, capping the scoring for the inning at 9. The Giants entered the top of the third inning with a 10-0 lead. All told, Uribe had 6 RBIS and 2 home runs in the same inning, the first Giant to do so (to have 6 RBIS) in 40 years.
The Giants would add on two more solo home runs. Buster Posey (his 16th) and Cody Ross (his first as a Giants) provided them. Pablo Sandoval, mired in a 3 for 37 slump, came in as a pinch hitter in the eighth and singled to right for an RBI, making it 13-0 Giants. This would prove to be the final score.
Lost in all the hitting was Madison Bumgarner's (6-6) spectacular start. The 21 year old rookie lefty pitched 7 innings of shut-out baseball, while giving up 7 hits, walking 1, and striking out 9. The Giants bullpen once again did their job, pitching 2 innings of perfect baseball, contributing to a combined shut-out of the Cubs.
Ryan Dempster didn't fare as well. In just 1 2/3 innings, Dempster (14-11) gave up 7 hits and 9 runs.
Hopefully for the Giants, they break the pattern tomorrow at Coors Field because 1 run will surely not be enough against the Rockies at home.
I can't get excited about the Giants' offense yet. Just look at the pattern I outlined in yesterday's blog entry (see 1 entry before this one) and add this score to it. It fits exactly into it. If the Giants score less than 2 runs at Coors Field tomorrow, I can almost guarantee that they will not win. However, the at-bats for the Giants did look better tonight, but Dempster's sinker was up. It's good to see the Giants ripping location mistakes, something they have been struggling to do as of late. Perhaps the team meeting Bruce Bochy had with the hitters before the game did something to wake up the offense.
This and That
The Giants' starting pitcher, Madison Bumgarner, had 2 hits in the second inning (That's right. He did not give them up, but he swung the bat and got them). The Giants have given up 2 runs or less in 16 straight games, the first time that's happened since the A's did it in 1981. With the Dodgers defeating the Padres 3-1, the Giants moved back into first place by a half game over San Diego. Colorado lost to Arizona 10-9, giving the Giants a 3.5 game lead against them. Tomorrow, the Giants face Jhoulys Chacin (9-9, 3.30 ERA). The Giants counter with Tim Lincecum (14-10, 3.60 ERA).